Canada – A local Canadian politician; Brian Masse, who has served in the House of Commons of Canada since 2002, has today announced that he has co-sponsored a new sports betting bill with Conservative MP Kevin Waugh to legalise single-event sports betting in Ottawa, the capital city of Canada.
Some years ago, a bill brought to the forefront by Brian Masse to allow wagering on a single sporting event was shot down by politicians in Canada.
However, following the legalisation of sports betting in many US states, the legalisation of sports event wagering looks closer than ever before in the North America continent nation.
Brian Masse spoke out about the announcement and the new bill:
“You now have bipartisan Conservative and NDP members co-sponsoring a bill. This will be another opportunity for the prime minister to do something on this. Kevin Waugh and I will be working with and lobbying members from all parties to finally get this done.”
Kevin Waugh was first elected to represent the riding of Saskatoon-Grasswood in the House of Commons of Canada in the 2015 Canadian federal election. Waugh commented on the potential of legalising and regulating sports betting:
“Every year black market bookmakers and offshore gambling sites generate over $14 billion in illegal revenues, none of which is regulated, taxed or invested back into Canadian communities. Instead of lining the pockets of gangs and criminals, simple legislation can regulate sports wagering as a tool for governments to drive positive investment in their communities. I am hopeful that all members will support this common-sense change.”
Masse expanded on the avoidance of such subject and how procrastination took place last year:
“[Liberals] Danced around on this during election on whether they support this. Now the music has run out, this is going to be debated and voted on within a few weeks and they will have to make a decision. We are going to lose market share to the U.S. we were hoping to attract U.S. customers, but now the fight is to retain customers. This is critical for our community. People who work at our casino do a great job, but they need this product to compete.”
Dave Cassidy, president of Unifor Local 444, which represents approximately 17,500 active and retired members, also spoke about the importance of job retaining:
“This file is a decade old. I’m glad we are taking another stab at it. We seem to have a couple parties on board now with this, so I’m hoping to get this done. It’s no secret Michigan has passed this and the facts are they are already moving forward. I know Motor City Casino is putting a lot of money into this and the other casinos are going to do the same. People need to understand what this means to the economy. We are talking what could be 100 to 150 new jobs with this. This is a $10-billion to $15-billion industry whether off-shore or on phones.”